It's been now more than two weeks since winter has switched into the frigid mode and I just couldn't be more sick and tired of it! Just when we all thought the whole country would soon be covered in budding flowers, the crazy weather has once again decided to take us for quite a ride... Most of the time I'm literally glued to my hot oven, as baking happens to be the only activity that helps me in maintaining the average temperature of human's body...
Raspberry & Meringue Bars:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
250g cold butter (cut into cubes)
2 teaspooons baking powder
5 tablespoons powdered sugar
5 egg yolks
2 tablespoons of cold water (only in case the dough seems too dry!)
Combine flour, sugar and baking powder in a large bowl. Using a pastry blender or two knives cut the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the egg yolks and knead for a couple of minutes, so that the dough just comes together. Divide the dough into two balls, cover separately in a plastic wrap and refrigerate for a few hours.
Once it has chilled sufficiently, remove half of the dough from the fridge and grate it into a lightly buttered 33x 20 cm pan. Just make sure to cover the whole bottom thoroughly! Bake in the preheated oven until light golden, then let cool completely.
For the meringue:
5 egg whites
5 egg whites
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla sugar
4 tablespoons instant vanilla pudding powder
1/2 cup sunflower oil
2-3 cups frozen raspberries
Beat egg whites until stiff peaks begin to form, then gradually start adding both of the sugars and the vanilla pudding powder, until fully incorporated. Pour in the oil in a steady stream, beating continously. Spoon the prepared mixture on top of the pre-baked crust and spread it evenly. Arrange raspberries on top, pressing them gently into the meringue. Take the remaining ball of dough from the fridge and grate it over the raspberries, until covered. Sprinkle with some granulated sugar and sliced almonds. Pop into the oven and bake until slightly puffed and light brown in colour.